Without any fanfare or traditional promotional advertising, not even a traditional release date, Beyonce released a digital music album on iTunes using the power of social media to sell it. And the results have been extraordinary. "Beyonce's latest album broke iTunes sales records, Apple said Monday. BEYONCÉ, which the singer announced on Facebook's Instagram mobile service, became the fastest selling album on iTunes with 828,773 purchased in its first three days, Apple reported. The album also broke the U.S. first-week album record with 617,213 sold, the company added."
Certainly others will try to emulate her strategy and not everyone can compete. She comes with a huge following, a track record of success, and a high name recognition. That this album made such a mark before any song was released or played to a radio audience demonstrates the marketing power her name alone must have.
But recognition also needs to be payed to Instagram as the social driver of her iTunes' success. The power of her appeal and influence and ability to sell through social media is quite powerful. And she adeptly pulled it off. Her audience, the ones that follow her on Instagram, responded to this unexpected Holiday present by quickly downloading and sharing their "find" to their followers. Over 800,000 in only 3 days; in a word, unbelievable!